Reading broadly introduces diversity into your life.
Have you ever read an intriguing article and wondered how the writer came up with the idea? Have you ever read a book that connects two very different subject matters in a unique way? Have you ever transported one idea from one industry to another to resolve a pesky challenge? Have you ever read something that was so incredulous or even whimsical that it gave you the courage to try to do something that once seemed impossible?
Reading broadly introduces diverse types of information into your life. It helps you to become bolder in your work and life.
A few months ago, I read the article, Cosmetics: High-tech Meets Emotion, and although it makes perfect sense that technology would play a role today in making cosmetics, it’s not something that I had ever given much thought to. The article is insightful and made me immediately think about making it a habit to read a variety of book genres. It reminded me to read articles on subjects that I usually do not pay attention to.
When I learned about Ralph Waldo Emerson’s Representative Men: Seven Lectures, I immediately thought that Emerson must have read broadly to be able to choose six men who he thought were great – he gave two lectures on Plato. His representative men include Plato, Swedenborg, Montaigne, Shakespeare, Napoleon and Goethe. Why did Emerson choose those six men? What was it about the six men that left such an impression on him that he considered them to be great? The six men were very different, how did Emerson first learn about them?
Several months later, I came across Superwomen by Albert Payson Terhune, which includes short profiles of 12 women: Lola Montez, Ninon De L’Enclos, Peg Woffington, Helen of Troy, Madame Jumel, Adrienne Lecouvreur, Cleopatra, George Sand (Amandine Lucile Aurore Dupin Dudevant), Madame du Barry, Lady Blessington, Madame Recamier, and Lady Hamilton. Why these 12 women? Once again, like Emerson, Terhune must have read broadly to be able to choose these 12 women.
And the people that Emerson and Terhune chose are very different, which suggests diversity in what they read. I plan to read both Representative Men: Seven Lectures and Superwomen. I also plan to continue to expand my reading menu, with the hope that some day, I too will be able to create a body of work that is diverse and innovative, which is a symbol of the depth and breadth of the books and materials that I read.
How about you? Are you willing to expand the type of books and materials you read? If you are in business, what would happen if each week you read a science article from Magatopia.com or Magportal.com?
Do you agree or disagree that reading introduces more diversity into your life? Why? Why not? Please let me know your thoughts in the comments section below. Many readers read this blog from other sites, so why don’t you pop over to The Invisible Mentor and subscribe (top on the right hand side) by email or RSS Feed.
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- Why You Must Read Broadly – Tip 1 (theinvisiblementor.com)